Thursday, February 20, 2020

I Like Thursday: Treats

Oh, yeah, a week for chocolate.

We grocery shop on Saturday morning - which was the day after Valentine's Day.  So we scooped up some half-priced Dove chocolates.  Yum.

We had to make a trip to Springfield.  A stop at Cerrato's Pastry Shop made our errand worthwhile!  These three were what was left after the ricotta cake and chocolate bomb disappeared. (Didn't think to photograph until after they were gone.)  Delicious.

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Turtles Together

I have the turtles all ironed together.  Batting is pinned behind the turtles.  I pulled out a bunch of thread to check out what colors I like best. 

Lots of choices.  If I'm lucky I'll start stitching today.  Fingers crossed!

Friday, February 14, 2020

Turtle Progress

I've been working on the applique turtles.  I don't have fusible web, as the instructions suggested.  But I do have 606 spray.  I printed the patterns to freezer paper, ironed to the pieces, cut them out, the flipped them wrong side up and pinned them to my spraying box.  The photo here is just before I hit them with the 606 fusible spray.  The pieces are each pinned down so they don't all scatter when sprayed.

The medium and large turtles were easier to work with than the little one.  Only one piece of freezer paper threatened to not peel off. 

Thursday, February 13, 2020

I Like Thursday: A Walk in the Woods

Friends and I took a walk in the woods this weekend.  Saw lots of interesting things.

First stop was the little waterfall, as usual.  Everything around it was encased in ice.  This photo was my favorite: the water looks like it's been painted.  I swear I can see the brush strokes.

An afternoon of good company and food (then I squeezed in a dance in the evening).  Quite a day!

Sunday, February 9, 2020

Tiny Turtle

I've taken the plunge.  I cut apart paper pieces Thursday night.

I worked on the littlest turtle first.  I figure he'll be the most difficult since some of the pieces are so small.  If I could get him assembled properly, then the rest should be easier.  Plus, if I totally botched something with the smallest turtle, there's plenty of fabric to redo. 

Friday, February 7, 2020

Orrery Scrap Bowl

Before I put away my zig-zag machine I made a little coil bowl.  This is from the skinny scraps of my sister's quilt.  These scraps were too small to sew together as strings, but too long to toss out.  I hate chucking out fabric.

(My latest bag of scrap is getting a second life as colorful bedding for someone's pet rats.)

Thursday, February 6, 2020

I Like Thursday: Exploring and Playing

Caught up with a friend over the weekend.  We got a chance walk at Coggshall park in Fitchburg.  It was too icy to tempt some of the trails, but we walked around part of the pond.  I'm looking forward to visiting in the spring.

Sunday, February 2, 2020

Cleanup and Startup

Printing on freezer paper is always an adventure.  Sometimes it prints, sometimes it jams and shreds.  I printed several of them before the printer started eating all the sheets.  Ironing a strip of paper at the top (the sheet on the far right) fixes that problem.  But that means I need to stop and iron in between cutting freezer paper and printing.  More work, but more reliable results.  I printed each turtle (or parts of turtles) three times, so I can cut all the individual freezer paper templates I need to assemble the whole turtle.  I am hoping to cut them apart and start ironing them to the fabric this week.

Thursday, January 30, 2020

I Like Thursday: Sunlight and Scraps

I liked the afternoon sunlight through the trees and on the snow.  So pretty!

Attended the Snow Ball on Saturday. So many happy, dancing people.  I did about half a week's steps all in a single afternoon.  Oof.

My mother visited Sunday.  My sister and nephew came over for dinner (that she prepared and we cooked).  A great way to spend the evening (with relatively little fuss).

I was amused at my nephew's reaction as I recited the different kinds of cookies he could have for dessert, especially when I agreed he could try them all.  I didn't realize I had five different kinds in the freezer!

Saturday, January 25, 2020

Applique Pattern

My next project is an applique quilting kit: a wall hanging of appliqued sea turtles.  I have not seen what this looks like in person, and the photo on the kit is too small to make out details.  The instructions seem to describe that the shell is one piece (and it kind of looks that way in the photo).  But the pattern clearly multiple pieces for the shell.  I like the look of separate pieces (but wow! they get pretty small with the little turtle).

First up, I need to copy and cut template pieces.  There's enough fabric to cut individual shell pieces, just not the way the instructions describe (another reason I suspect it's one big shell).  A lot will be too small to zig-zag stitch the raw edges, so I'm likely to straight stitch instead (alas, no blanket stitch on my Singer Graduate). 

The fabric is all batiks, all pretty colors.  This will be an interesting project - something new for me to try.

Thursday, January 23, 2020

I Like Thursday: Snow and Baking

January is flying by.

Attended a Game Day last weekend.  It had snowed the night before, just enough to make everything pretty but shallow enough to hike easily.

Monday, January 20, 2020

Curvy Strings

Made some more curvy string blocks.  Not sure how I want to put them together?  Line up the waves?  Separate them with sashes?  Try to combine colors?  Or maybe totally random.  So many choices!

The inspiration for these blocks was a set of paintings.  I have enough fabric for a few more blocks like these and then I think I may do some blocks that are more like the paintings. 

I'm winding down my scrappy projects.  I will be pulling out my Singer Graduate to zig-zag some frankenstein batting, then checking what decorative stitches it has for my upcoming applique project (which has hit some snags due to confusing instructions/pattern). 

Plenty to keep me busy!

Thursday, January 16, 2020

I Like Thursday: Pigging Out

New foods, more quilting stuff, met a few new piggies.  It was a good week.

I had bookmarked this recipe for Crispy Black Pepper Cauliflower Steaks a while ago and forgot about it.  Pulled it up last week.  Good timing - cauliflower was on sale.  My version didn't turn out vegan because of what I had on hand, but it was delicious.  I need to make notes because I will make this again.

Got around to watching Good Omens, which we finished this week.  Oh, that was fun!  There will be a second season?  Excellent!

I've been watching progress on this quilt top for years.  She finally finished it.  So many tiny blocks.  This is so amazing.

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Filling In

For today's "cavy" portion of the blog I'm sharing Kai and Po, and Ruby with her daughter S'mores.  These piggies (as of Saturday) were available at the Dakin Shelter in Leverett, MA.

Kai and Po were adorable, with rooster tails and sticky-uppy, bed-head fur.  They came right over for treats, then promptly tried to steal the carrot peels from each other.  There were several tug-of-wars, even as I was offering them more peelings.  What dopes!

I even got to hold them.  Oh, such a struggle to catch them.  I may not try that again.  Young pigs are so fast! 

Saturday, January 11, 2020

All Stringy and Crumbly

Hmm... cloudy weather and a north-facing wall does not make for pretty pictures.  These blocks are actually quite bright and cheery.  I'll have to try again on a sunny day.

Right now I'm debating how big to make this quilt.  They're 8" blocks.  I could make this a large wall hanging, a throw quilt, a bed quilt.  One more column could complete the large wall hanging.  I don't have enough right now to complete something larger, but I'm sure I'll have enough in a few months for a throw quilt.  This doesn't have a home, either, which would help me figure out what size to make it.  Any recommendations?

Thursday, January 9, 2020

I Like Thursday: Flakes and Scraps

Last week flew by!  I thought I'd have nothing to write about, but found several photos I took during the week that made me smile.

I like this little stuffed guinea pig my mom gave me at Christmas.  It had a clip to go on a key chain or something.  It was too distracting to hang from the rear view mirror and my "new" car has such a big empty dash.  I found some velcro tape and voila!  I have a cute little traveling companion.

Monday, January 6, 2020

Scrappy Wall

It's time for the after-project clean up:  putting away the thread, sorting the leftover fabric, then the after-project projects.  I'm still working on the crumb hexies - there's enough to create another 30-40 of those.  There's a lot more strings to continue my curvy string blocks.  My selvedge bag was overflowing and then some.  Shiplapped was my last selvedge quilt.  I had picked a new selvedge block pattern (even made my own template) but only recently bought the black to use in the center.  So I have spent the last few days diligently putting a dent in my pile of selvedges.  Or at least trying to.  The pile on the floor looks as big as it did a week ago.  But I have 15 blocks started.

I am very pleased with my design wall!  I threw up some scrap batting and started sticking blocks to it.  I need to sort through my scraps of batting at some point and organize this better (and eventually take down the two quilts hanging behind the batting).  But for a quick-and-dirty test, this is great.  I really like how the selvedge blocks are looking (on the left) and some of the curvy blocks in a column on the right.

Thursday, January 2, 2020

I Like Thursday: It's 2020

Happy New Year!

I am getting a head start on my winter weight.  I usually gain several pounds by the end of February... I'm just about there already.  Just take one look at this week's likes and you'll see why.

I made these Chocolate Caramel Pretzel Bars last week.  I have been experimenting in making caramel because I never remember to buy some to have on hand.  This batch turned out to be more of an adventure than I expected, but overall these turned out nicely.  I still have more pretzels - so I think I'll make them again.